December 16, 2016

French Gingerbread Cake {"Pain d'Epices" Recipe}

Aromatic spice-laden "pain d'epices" (gingerbread) is a traditional cake with an illustrious history. Gingerbread dates back to the Middle Ages when European Crusaders returned from the East with ginger and other spices. This recipe is adapted from a version made by P√Ętisserie Lerch, a well-known pasty shop in Paris. Six different spices (allspice, anise, cinnamon, cloves, ginger and nutmeg) give the cake a beautiful fragrance. Especially satisfying on chilly days, gingerbread cake is delicious served toasted with butter to accompany tea or coffee. Whipped cream also makes a perfect pairing with the warm cake.

Pain d'Epices Recipe 
{from "Paris Patisserie" by Doree Greenspan}


3/4 cup honey
1/2 cup brown sugar
3/4 cup water
1/2 cup butter
2 cups all-purpose flour
2 large eggs, beaten
1 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 1/2 teaspoons ground anise seeds
1 1/2 teaspoons ground allspice
1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1 1/2 teaspoons groudn nutmeg
1 1/2 teaspoons powdered ginger
1 teaspoon ground cloves

1.) Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit and butter a 9" x 5" pan (set aside). Butter a 9" by 5" loaf pan and set aside.
2.) In a saucepan, bring the honey, brown sugar and water to a boil. Simmer gently over medium heat stirring once or twice, for five minutes. Stir in the butter and allow to melt into the mixture.
3.) In a large mixing bowl, whisk the eggs until frothy.
4.) In a separate bowl, sift the flour and then add all of the spices. Slowly whisk the egg mixture into the flour mixture. Last, incorporate the honey-butter mixture into the batter.
5.) Pour the batter into the loaf pan and bake for about 45 minutes or until the cake begins to pull away from the sides of the pan.

Copyright © 2016, Lisa Alexander. All rights reserved. 

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